Our life is a journey filled with lessons, hardships, heartaches, joys, celebrations, and special moments that will ultimately lead us to our destination, our purpose in life. The road will not always be smooth, in fact, throughout our travel, we will encounter many challenges. Some of these challenges will test our courage, strength, weaknesses, and faith. Along the way, we may stumble upon obstacles that will come between the paths that we are destined to take.  To follow the right path, we must overcome these obstacles. We need to constantly sail to find new possibilities, fresh beginnings, and experiences.

In my 33 years in religious life, I have encountered all these in my journey. In fact, sometimes I tempt to give up. Especially now that we are experiencing this worldwide crisis, the covid 19 virus. For almost two years now, we cannot freely move as we used to be, our activities are limited, and people are confined only in their respective homes. But how we react to what we are facing now, determines what kind of outcome the rest of our journey will be like. If we only focus on the negative result of this Pandemic, we might miss out on some amazing things that life has to offer.

Reflecting on this situation God is calling me and to the whole world for conversion, from fear to care, from me to we, and from death to life. Instead of focusing only on our own self, our comfort, and wellbeing we have also to look at the needs of others. God has given us the time for contemplation, look at nature, think about what is happening to our mother earth which is generally already abused by many. The Lord leads us to be compassionate to His creation and take good care not only human beings but also all that surrounds us, nature.

When this pandemic started, at first, I was so afraid of going out, meeting people and being contaminated with this virus, we only stay in the four corners of the formation center. Upon reflecting on these actions, I realize that life must go on, why should I be stagnant. So, I started to entertain myself to have gardening, care the plants in our community until I decided to apply for a project from DOLE about care for creation livelihood program for the Prelature´s scholars. Which until now the scholars are enjoying planting organic vegetables, making organic fertilizers, cleaning the area, and converting it into a natures park where people come and avail our products.

Throughout this adventure Jesus is just sleeping in our hearts, we need to be awakened by His presence, journeying with us all through life. So, despite all these experiences, my vision in life remains: to be faithful to my calling, to serve the Lord for the rest of my life.

Very much grateful,

Sr. Leonarda R. Abejero, OP

Begang Community, Basilan

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